An injured shoulder may well have stopped All Blacks utility back Jordie Barrett running on to the field for the rest of the season, but it didn't stop him visiting Toko last week to spend some time talking to the locals there.

The visit, arranged by the Toko Lions, was a mix and mingle type event, says Toko Lions president Graham Fergus.

"We called it a pie and a pint, and did a leaflet drop to mailboxes around Toko to let people know it was happening."

Graham says the event was organised to give people in the rural community a "bit of a boost".

The pie and pint event at Toko Community Hall was well attended.
The pie and pint event at Toko Community Hall was well attended.

"It's been a hard year for farmers and people living rurally, so this was our way of doing something to support the community. We get a lot of support from the community so we want to support them in return."

Jordie said it was a pleasure to be involved with the day.

"Coming here today was great, to talk to other rural people and share experiences with them, have a chat about how things are going. It has been tough for farmers and those who live rurally recently. I've enjoyed meeting everyone today."

Before the pie and a pint, it was time for pies of the mud variety down the road at the Toko PLaycentre, where Jordie met some of his younger fans. The youngsters were excited to see an All Black walk into their playground and plenty of them took the opportunity to ask when he would be playing again.

Four-year-old Clayton McCallum was thrilled to throw a ball with Jordie. "He plays rugby for the All Blacks so he is really good at rugby."